Welfare to Work

Blue Sky Logo USE    rapt-logo

Get Ready, Get Working

BLUE SKY and RAPt is a third sector partnership with over 20 years’ experience of supporting some of society’s most vulnerable people. We believe that even those with the most complex needs can achieve transformational change. Having a job is instrumental to this, giving people purpose, motivation and connections.

Our new person-centred programme – Get Ready, Get Working – is designed for people experiencing multiple barriers to getting a job, due to addiction, mental health or offending behaviour. It offers life skills and the specialist support they need to overcome these barriers, to prepare for, find and keep a job.

Get Ready, Get Working is a specialist end-to-end package consisting of health and well-being interventions, skills and confidence development, behavioural change, and vocational training leading to real work or placements including apprenticeships. We specifically target people with addiction, primary mental health needs or who are trapped in a cycle of re-offending.

Work with us

Our shared expertise allows us to operate between government departments and to integrate our services. We combine experience of Welfare-to-Work and NHS England-funded treatment with decades of engaging employers and of recruiting and managing people to sustain employment. This powerful combination achieves richer outcomes for both individuals and communities.

We offer end-to-end service opportunities or spot purchase arrangements. Our modular services are designed in consultation with our customers and we are committed to evaluating the impact of our services and reporting on our social impact performance.

About Blue Sky:

Blue Sky is a social enterprise that employs and trains ex-offenders and prisoners. We help people with a criminal record to turn their lives around through real paid work. We reduce re-offending and its significant cost to local and national government. We enable businesses to demonstrate their positive social impact whilst accessing different labour markets.

Through its current enterprise model, Blue Sky operates across 30 different contract areas in London, South East, South West and East Midlands. It works with commercial companies and local authorities to provide real jobs for ex-offenders.

Through Blue Sky’s current enterprise model, we offer direct employment, a real wage for a real job, with support; giving people the financial and emotional stability, self-esteem and a sense of purpose. We also open up new social networks and help enable a healthier lifestyle, all resulting in people achieving sustainable outcomes for them and their families.

Blue Sky Achievements:

  • Since 2005, Blue Sky has employed over 1,500 ex-offenders and serving prisoners, the population of a large prison
  • Reducing re-offending score is one of the highest recorded by the Ministry of Justice
    Data Lab
  • Generates direct returns to the Treasury from income tax and national insurance contributions paid of ex-offenders employees and benefits not claimed (c£250,000 in
    14 / 15)
  • 43% of Blue Sky leavers secure onward employment – over half with our commercial clients
  • Over a third of Blue Sky employees report less use of mental health and substance misuse services as a result of securing a job with Blue Sky

People who have benefited from Blue Sky’s employment and training services say:  

“There remains hope for the future where before I had doubts. The course as a whole managed that. Thank you.” Learner, HMP Belmarsh

“Very good, fantastic form of help for us—keep it going” Learner, HMP Wormwood Scrubs

“It happens quickly, the progression from being nowhere to somewhere, with Blue Sky its smoother sailing.” Blue Sky employee, Ash

“Blue Sky builds your confidence, so you have skills like wings, so you can soar through life.” Blue Sky employee, Craig

“Blue Sky is a stepping stone, it’s an opportunity for change and moving forward. They motivate you to try different things. It’s very positive.” former Blue Sky employee

To see how we can work together please contact:
Kate Markey, Director of Employment Services (MD Blue Sky)
E: kate.markey@bluekskydevelopment.co.uk
T: 020 3752 5560

About RAPt

RAPt is one of the largest providers of substance misuse services in the UK custodial estate. The charity provides evidence-based, recovery-orientated, drug and alcohol rehabilitation services to over 20,000 people per annum, working in 19 prisons (category B to D; male/female; open-closed; local/trainer, and with young offenders) delivering a full range of treatment modalities including assessment, clinical interventions, motivational case management, harm reduction, 1:1 structured counselling, brief interventions, MoJ-accredited structured treatment programmes and health promotion.

RAPt’s programmes significantly improve mental health, focus groups report improvements in trauma, depression and anxiety symptoms – key factors in enabling people to sustain employment.

RAPt is now the only provider of prison-based drugs services with evidence of impact post-release-offending, analysis of PNC data demonstrating a 64% reduction in the volume of offending. We have steadily broadened its service offer, expanding into the community, taking on clinical services and helping to motivate people to reduce dependencies and eventually achieve abstinence.

RAPt’s track record of community team has worked with over 3,500 customers over the last five years. Our person-centred services include:

  • IAG on housing, advocacy for residential treatment, ETE
  • Transitional support, including ‘meet & greet’ volunteers and peer mentors
  • Family and Friends service
  • Apprenticeship scheme

Visit www.rapt.org.uk